Jamey Blakeley doesn't remember a time when he wasn't fishing or hunting. When he was just 6 or so, he and his brother Jacob would spend the day hunting squirrels in the woods of McDonald County.
At four or five years old, Blakeley learned the intricacies of successful fishing.
His interest in fishing and hunting developed into a lifelong love for the outdoors. That passion has propelled him to open a store to help others in that same pursuit.
Blakeley has launched Ozark Trophy Hunters, just south of the U.S. Highway 71 and Highway 90 intersection near Ozark Mountain Propane.
The white building, a former flea market, is visible from the highway. The location in Jane carries deer urine, deer calls, special feed, locally crafted fishing lures and more. Blakeley began his enterprise with an online store, then later branched out into a brick and mortar location.
His business idea for the store quickly gained speed after Bass Pro bought out Cabela's. That's when Blakeley noticed the store discontinued a lot of much-needed items.
So Blakeley decided to open his own business, carrying supplies for the serious deer hunter and fisherman. From carefully carved deer grunts to fishing lures created in nearby Garfield, Blakeley offers quality supplies needed for the hunt and the fishing expedition.
"If we don't have it, we can get it," Blakeley said.
Blakeley maintains he offers items at better prices than Walmart. Some of the items his store carries cannot be found elsewhere, he said.
The deer and turkey calls have lifetime warranties. The Pico lures are hand-painted and hand-tied by Mitch Glenn in Garfield.
The deer feed is specially crafted, not by large companies, but smaller entities which create a certain blend.
Blakeley also hopes to expand his selection in time, including the addition of trapping supplies.
"We're slowly building it up," he said.
The name for the business came from a hunting team, comprised of Jamey, his brother and two others. Though the team is taking a hiatus, the Ozark Trophy Hunters team usually travels and competes, Jamey said.
He thought the same name for the store would fit well.
Gutting the Operation
Blakeley and his family spent a great deal of time transforming the flea market building into his new shop. His brother utilized a tool from the 1880s to chisel out grooves in some wood, creating a unique wooden frame for the bathroom mirror. Work on the mirror took an entire day.
Walls were stripped of dictionary pages and newspaper, then repainted. His wife, Sky Blakeley, said the entire floor was swept and mopped several times to clear away dirt and debris.
Jamey's mother, Betty, put her artistic and creative skills to task, painting a large logo as a backdrop on the main wall.
She built a storage area with a shelf out of reclaimed wood from Exeter. Each piece of wood was cleaned, Blakeley added.
His mom also created a special corner, painting the walls to emulate a log cabin's walls, and set up a small picket fence around the area. The picket fence was utilized on a float last year during Jane Days, Blakeley said.
Getting It Off The Ground
Sky and Jamey grew up together in Jane. Married for almost four years now, Sky says she knew Jamey's love for the outdoors was a driving force.
She, too, hunted and fished while growing up, then hit a "girly girl" phase and discontinued her hobbies. She soon realized, however, that she could spend more time with Jamey while walking in the woods and putting a worm on the end of the line.
These days, the two are committed to making the new endeavor successful. Blakeley has transitioned from a job at the Compass Group. He worked there for five and a half years, but now operates his business full-time.
Sky has worked for Compass for the same amount of time. She continues to work there and assists her husband with his business as well.
The two are striving to carve out their own place for success. The store carries unique items, like some old ammo boxes that Blakeley is selling for a friend.
A side room is dubbed "The Bargain Room," with good sale prices on certain items.
Blakeley also networks with Centershot Archery of Anderson. He and owner Jeremy Whittle plan to send each other business.
Blakeley's store is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday. However, hours are sometimes extended. "If my truck is outside, we're still open," he said.
For Blakeley, the business is a dream come true.
"Owning my own store makes me feel like I can help others with what they need and want," he said.General News on 09/27/2018
Print Headline: Now Open: Ozark Trophy Hunters Offers Supplies For Serious Hunters, Fishermen